Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Rainsy has ‘no interest’ in ongoing court cases

Rainsy has ‘no interest’ in ongoing court cases

Former opposition leader Sam Rainsy.
Former opposition leader Sam Rainsy. Pha Lina

Rainsy has ‘no interest’ in ongoing court cases

Exiled politician Sam Rainsy says he no longer has “any interest” in contesting a suite of legal cases brought against him by government officials, with his lawyer yesterday skipping a court appearance related to the prime minister’s defamation suit against him.

Rainsy, who on Saturday quit as Cambodia National Rescue Party president and left the party, was summonsed to appear yesterday for questioning over the premier’s $1 million defamation case for comments suggesting he paid social media activist Thy Sovantha the same amount to attack the opposition. Handling another case, his Cambodia-based lawyer Sam Sokong did not turn up.

From France, where he has lived since 2015 to avoid prison in a case widely considered politically motivated, Rainsy said fighting in Cambodia’s “kangaroo courts” was “useless”.

“They don’t deliver justice according to the law, they work according to politics,” Rainsy said on the phone, adding a political solution was the only approach to the slew of cases, among which are two convictions carrying seven years of prison time.

Reached yesterday, Sokong said he wasn’t sure whether the CNRP would continue funding Rainsy’s legal defence now that he had stepped down, though maintained he would see the case through and soon submit further evidence, including leaked purported online chats between Sovantha and the premier, which were the basis of his client’s accusation.

Court spokesman and prosecutor in the case Ly Sophana said the action would continue, regardless of the absence of the defendant or his lawyer.

MOST VIEWED

  • Proof giants walked among us humans?

    For years a debate has waged about whether certain bas relief carvings at the 12th-century To Prohm Temple, one of the most popular attractions at the Angkor Wat Temple Complex in Siem Reap province, depicted dinosaurs or some rather less exotic and more contemporary animal,

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Long way to go before Cambodia gets a ‘smart city’

    Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Battambang will struggle to attain smart city status without adopting far reaching master plans, according to officials tasked with implementing the program. The brainchild of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean), the smart city program seeks to link up

  • Japan bank buys major stake in ANZ Royal Bank

    Japan's largest bank acquired more than half of ANZ’s shares in Cambodia on Thursday, according to a statement from Kith Meng’s Royal Group. Japan's JTrust Bank, announced that they had acquired a 55% of stake in ANZ Royal Bank. According to a Royal Group